Women's History Month - Elizabeth Blackwell

The first woman to receive a medical degree in the US.

Queen Ranavalona III of Madagascar

The last Ruler of Madagascar.

She's Crafty - Microscopic Edition!

Some really cool science inspired crafts!

Happy Birthday - Septima Poinsette Clark

The "Queen Mother" or "Grandmother of the American Civil Rights Movement."

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Kickstart This!

Here's a selection of wonderful Kickstarter projects that deserve some attention!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Quote of the Day

"The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself." Anna Quindlen

It's true. We have this notion in our culture that if we just try harder, we can be perfect. Or, at least we should always be trying to be closer to perfect. We should try to do everything, have it all, be the complete package. But is that really fair?

How much of who we are is being turned down, hidden, or otherwise denied? How much of what makes each of us the beautiful, unique, amazing people we are is being down-played just to try and please someone else?

How would our lives look differently if we lovingly accepted our true selves, and supported each other in our individual quests?

Friday, July 18, 2014

She's Crafty - Birds of a Feather Edition

My desk in our office, as well my sewing table in my craft room both look out over our back yard and the trees that seem to be a popular gathering space for local birds of all kinds. I've seen black-capped night herons, cedar waxwings, and even a great egret a couple of time. And that's in addition to the regulars -- finches and chickadees and the like.

In honor of my feathered guests (and entertainment), here's a selection of some super cute bird-themed crafts!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Music Break - Colbie Caillat

Colbie Caillat is back with another great song. This one is reminds us that we shouldn't have to try so hard to impress others when true acceptance comes from within ourselves. Obviously, this one is getting a lot of play in the SRPS computer cave.



I've read a couple of mixed revues of this song, and even one that's claiming it's shaming women.

I don't get that at all. I get "do you like you?" She's not saying women shouldn't wear make up or hair extensions, or go running, or enjoy shopping. She's saying that we shouldn't have to do all these things to make other people like us -- that our worth shouldn't come from the things we do for others. That we should just be ourselves, for ourselves.

What do you think?


Try

Put your make-up on
Get your nails done
Curl your hair
Run the extra mile
Keep it slim so they like you,
do they like you?

Get your sexy on
Don't be shy, girl
Take it off
This is what you want, to belong, so they like you
Do you like you?

You don't have to try so hard
You don't have to, give it all away
You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up
You don't have to change a single thing

You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try
Yooou don't have to try

Oooh Oooh

Get your shopping on,
at the mall, max your credit cards
You don't have to choose,
buy it all, so they like you
Do they like you?

Wait a second,
Why, should you care, what they think of you
When you're all alone, by yourself,
do you like you?
Do you like you?

You don't have to try so hard
You don't have to, give it all away
You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up
You don't have to change a single thing

You don't have to try so hard
You don't have to bend until you break
You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up
You don't have to change a single thing

You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try

You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try
Yooou don't have to try

Oooh Oooh

You don't have to try so hard
You don't have to, give it all away
You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up
You don't have to change a single thing

You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try, try, try, try
You don't have to try
You don't have to try

Take your make-up off
Let your hair down
Take a breath
Look into the mirror, at yourself
Don't you like you?
Cause I like you

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Kickstart This!

Here's a selection of wonderful Kickstarter projects that deserve some attention!



Amie Lockwood has created a beautifully illustrated children's books which break social norms. Tired of bedtime stories that reinforced old stereotypes and gender norms, she created Adventures of Alex.
The story starts with Alex, an inquisitive child with red hair and the courage of a lion. Along the way, we meet her friends, their parents and the people in their lives. To a child, The Adventures of Alex series are fun, entertaining stories. To an adult, they’re an important and easy way to entertain children without subjecting them to the stereotypes often found in children's literature. The world is diverse and so are our stories.


I think we can all relate to the desire to float through life sometimes, especially when things on the ground are too painful or scary to deal with. Nicola Murphy and Katy Wright-Mead have written a touching and beautiful short film, Float, about a young woman who has to make the brave to come back down and face reality.
In today's world, with the alluring ability to manipulate our public persona, we often disconnect from our authentic selves. It takes courage to be an individual, to face pain, and to learn and grow. To deny ourselves this experience is to risk losing sight of our deep desires, and ultimately ourselves. Parker is a young female puppet of society (both literally and figuratively). With the help of her "go-getter" boyfriend she has constructed the perfect persona for herself, but when her dying father fails to recognize his only daughter, Parker is faced with the decision to float farther from reality or face what is waiting for her on the ground.



When I saw the listing for Recipes for the Dead, I literally made a "squee" sound, out loud. And then my next response was, 'Issue Three?! Why haven't I heard of this before?!' 
Recipes for the Dead is a Victorianpunk-manga-ish comic series that follows the mad adventures of an ambitious baker who just wants to lift her pastry shop out of bankruptcy. Making one reckless decision after another, she attracts the attentions of a sinister neighbor, accidentally concocts a recipe that captivates demonic beings, and finds herself suspiciously much too charming to the boy who never paid attention before.



I love simple, beautifully designed games, and Tabula clearly fits the bill!
Made entirely of wood and designed to be self-contained, Tabula is its own box. The game closes in on itself to become an sleek tabula, "tablet" in Latin. The name Tabula also comes from "Tabula Rasa", meaning "blank slate" - the board starts as a blank slate that then becomes filled with the tiles.





Like a lot of us, I grew up with this image plastered everywhere. And while I knew a little about the story behind it, it wasn't until I started to learn more about the women in the war effort that I started to really understand what it meant. And then I read Gone to Soldiers by Marge Piercy, and fell in love with the women working in the Detroit factories, many of whom were trying to make ends meet while their husbands or brothers were off fighting overseas. I'm curious to learn more about Jessica L. Folk's Poster Girl, and although it's already funded, you can be sure I'll be looking out for it at local film festivals! -life
"Poster Girl" follows the tale of a young married woman as she discovers that life is not so simple once her husband is off at war and she's facing a life she never thought she'd have. She goes off to work in the factories and the antics that ensue flip her world upside down. Watch her become Rosie and lead women on the march toward equality!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Quote of the Day


“One's philosophy is not best expressed in words; it is expressed in the choices one makes. In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.” Eleanor Roosevelt